March 14, 2013
Mattos, Editor and Publisher
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster
The Farsider is an independent publication that is not
affiliated with the San Jose Police Benevolent
Assn. The SJPBA has allowed the Farsider to be included on its web site solely
for the convenience
of the retired San Jose Police community. The content of this newsletter does
not represent or reflect
the views of the San Jose Police Benevolent Association's Board of Directors or
CELEBRATION OF LIFE
For those of you who want to make a note on your
calendar, Ken Hawkes has advised that Doug Wright's family has reserved the POA
Hall from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 30th, to celebrate his life.
We'll include a reminder the Thursday before.
A similar gathering will be held for Roger Finton in the near future, but we
haven't yet been advised of a date or venue.
PBA MEETS NEXT
The PBA will
be holding its March meeting next Wednesday, March 20, at the POA Hall. The bar
will open at 5:00 followed by the buffet dinner.
The POA sent out a membership alert recently that references this
story from yesterday's Mercury News...
Reform Battle Widens
files complaints on behalf of employee unions
By John Woolfolk
Mercury News March 13, 2013
SAN JOSE A state agency that oversees government employee rights has issued
four complaints against San Jose over negotiations with its unions on a pension
reform measure that voters approved in June, further frustrating the citys
attempts to implement its provisions. The action by the California Public
Employment Relations Board, or PERB, means that the agencys lawyers, who
reviewed unfair-practice charges by city unions, found they deserve a hearing
before an administrative law judge.
Union representatives hailed the PERB complaints at a Tuesday news conference as
affirmation of their charge that city officials engaged in sham negotiations
over the pension reforms that became Measure B.
All along, we have in fact been at the table to find legal, viable solutions,
said Yolanda Cruz, president of the American Federation of State, County and
Municipal Employees Local 101, the citys largest employee union. The city
refused and instead moved forward with their own proposals.
Mayor Chuck Reed dismissed the matter as a mere speed bump on a litigation road
that he believes will end in upholding the pension reforms he championed. Nearly
70 percent of San Jose voters approved the measure.
What PERB thinks about what happened is irrelevant, Reed said. The voters
have already spoken.
PERB is one of two venues where unions have challenged the city pension measure.
They also have lawsuits pending in Santa Clara County Superior Court. A hearing
on a union request for an injunction is scheduled later this week, and a trial
date is set for June 17.
PERB staff lawyers filed the complaints on behalf of Cruzs union and three
others: the San Jose Firefighters Local 230; the International Federation of
Professional and Technical Engineers Local 21; and the Operating Engineers Local
3. The city must file an answer within 20 days. A settlement conference will be
scheduled, and failing an agreement, the complaints will be heard by an
administrative law judge. The judges proposed decision can be appealed to the
agencys board in Sacramento. The losing party can then seek judicial review by
the state appellate court.
Government employee unions have found PERB a choice battleground for their
efforts to block voter-approved pension reforms. The same day San Jose voters
approved Measure B, San Diego voters approved a plan that puts new city hires
except for police recruits on 401(k)-style retirement savings plans instead of
traditional taxpayer-guaranteed pensions and freezes pay on which employee
pensions are based for five years.
But a PERB administrative law judge last month ruled that San Diego failed to
negotiate in good faith with the citys unions and required the city to rescind
Prop. B. City officials have appealed.
San Jose spent months in negotiations with its 11 employee unions over Reeds
retirement reform measure. The city modified its proposed measure repeatedly
before putting it on the ballot, adding an optional reduced pension plan that
employees could choose to avoid the higher costs of their current plan, reducing
proposed increases in employee pension contributions and dropping a number of
provisions unions opposed.
We met endlessly, hundreds of hours, Reed said. We just never reached an
Unions charged that city officials misled them in negotiations by citing a
worst-case figure of $650 million for how high the citys yearly pension bill
could reach that they said was unsubstantiated, and argued that, had the city
considered their alternative proposals, the city would be reaping retirement
savings now rather than fighting them in court.
Measure B was a giant lie! said Christopher Platten, a lawyer who represents
two of the unions, including the firefighters.
City officials countered that the $650 million figure an off-the-cuff estimate
by the former retirement director when asked during a council meeting what the
worst-case cost increase could be was never the basis for pension reform
City officials also questioned the purported savings in the union pension
proposals, which they said largely affected only new hires and would allow some
current workers to switch to a costly state pension plan better than what they
have now with the city.
THE TRIALS AND
TRIBULATIONS OF SAN JOSE AND THE SJPD
San Jose Residents Trying to Tackle Crime Due to Low SJPD Staffing
Click on the link below to view the Channel 7 newscast
MORE ON FRAZIER'S
MOVE TO OVERSEE THE OAKLAND PD
Former SJPD D/C Tom
Frazier who will oversee the Oakland PD as we reported last week received a few
lines in last Sunday's Internal Affairs column...
Cop Has Tough Job in Oakland
When Tom Frazier was named to oversee Oaklands police department by U.S.
District Judge Thelton Henderson last Monday, he brought Bay Area roots with
him. Frazier came up through the San Jose Police Department, reaching deputy
chief before he took the job as Baltimores police commissioner in late 1993.
Frazier was a strong candidate for San Jose chief when the job went to Lou
Cobarruviaz in 1991.
Frazier, 67, who later supervised a federal agency dealing with
community-oriented policing, will have his hands full in Oakland, a department
long riven by accusations of racism and brutality. For starters, police Chief
Howard Jordan will stay in his position, though Frazier can fire the chief.
Oakland has also hired former New York Police Commissioner William Bratton as a
Frazier, who will be paid $270,000, will have broad powers. His tenure in
Baltimore suggests that the deft and polished administrator wont be shy about
using them. Already, some folks are suggesting that Jordan will be looking for a
new job. In a stroke of double irony, former Oakland Chief Anthony Batts, who
interviewed for the San Jose job in 2010, took over as Baltimores police
commissioner last year.
Last Week's Poll
The table under this image of last week's poll shows the results...
most recent Rasmussen Reports releases, click here:
I was very saddened and depressed by the news about Doug Wright and Roger Finton.
I had the pleasure and privilege of working with both of them during my SJPD
days. They were good cops and good men. I worked under Sgt. Wright for a couple
of shifts, and as some may recall, I was not the calmest and easiest officer to
supervise. I remember the patience, intelligence and understanding that Sgt.
Wright demonstrated to me during the times he and I had to discuss a particular
issue, and I am most grateful for the mentoring he provided when I made
It is sad to see so many of the fine coworkers with whom I shared my SJPD
experiences passing on. May they all rest in peace. It causes me to listen
closely for the swishing of the Grim Reaper's scythe.
May God grant Doug and Roger an eternity of peace and a well earned rest.
Harry J. Mullins, #1361
Doug was my first patrol
sergeant when I moved to the PD from the S/O, and while I didn't create any
issues for him as my supervisor at least none that I can recall Harry's
message is spot on. Nor can I say anything less than positive about Roger, a
former coworker from the same era whose personal friendship lasted for 43 years.
I'm sure the sentiments expressed above are felt by hundreds of readers, even if
the vast majority are too shy to write in about the two we lost last week.
This was sent to me by a friend, I thought you might want to include it in
addition to the array about the slain Santa Cruz officers you had last week.
~ ~ ~
To My Friends,
This morning, my daughter Melissa and I stood on a small "walk bridge" above
Highway 17 in Los Gatos to observe the Memorial Procession for the slain Santa
Cruz Police officers. The procession started near the Boardwalk in Santa Cruz
and proceeded single file over the Santa Cruz Mountains towards its final
destination in San Jose at HP Pavilion. We stood for perhaps an hour before the
procession arrived at our little bridge. We knew it was approaching when bands
of CHP motorcycles sped by as an advance team to clear the highway.
Finally, the highway had no traffic whatsoever for maybe 3-5 minutes. Then, a
lone police vehicle led the first of hundreds of officers on motorcycles, police
cars, buses, fire engines and every other array of support vehicles. Several of
us on the bridge waved to the procession and many of the officers waved back and
"beeped" their sirens at us in recognition.
The procession went on for as much as 10 minutes. I have attached a rather poor
quality photo from my cellphone of the very first vehicle in the procession. If
you blow up the photo you can see the overpass ahead of us (which is Main Street
in Los Gatos). On that overpass you can see a Santa Clara County fire truck with
several firemen/officers at full attention and salute. They remained in their
full attention for the entire procession to pass.
It was a very touching and powerful moment to experience. It was also very
comforting to see this group of officers and other public servants and their
support for each other and their profession. It was the ultimate reminder of
what is on the line for our officers and fire fighters every time they put on
their uniforms. I hope I never have to see another reminder.
God Bless them all.
An item in the Lighter
Side and Other Odds & Ends column below is a video of the Santa Cruz to San Jose
memorial motorcade as seen through the eyes of one of the CHP motor officers who
escorted the procession. The footage was likely captured by a Go-Pro video
camera attached to the motor behind the wind screen.
Wil Smoke (not a typo,
only one "L") wrote to say he agrees with the sentiment Leroy expressed in this
message he posted on his Facebook page. If the editorial causes you to tighten
your jaw or clench your teeth, the author's phone number and e-mail address can
be found at the bottom of the editorial...
The liberal press at work. When you read, "I mean no disrespect to the
departed or to the hundreds and hundreds of law enforcement officials..." you
can bet he is preparing to be disrespectful. And disrespectful he is. It must
have cut this liberal to the quick to see such an outpouring of care and concern
for law enforcement from the community at large. Eat your heart out, Mr.
Calkins. You and your ilk can only sit back and watch with envy as true respect
and admiration is demonstrated by The People.
the link below will take you to the Monterey Herald editorial in question...
Just wanted to mention that I and three other people went to the services for
the two slain officers at the HP Pavilion last Thursday. First, let me say that
I drive past the location where the shooting incident took place almost
everyday. It shocked almost everybody here. Stunned is probably a more accurate
word. Nobody could believe it happened here in this quiet little beach town of
The service lasted three hours, and literally thousands of officers from all
over California and beyond came to pay their respects and lend their support.
The eulogies and stories were many and moving. Sympathies poured out. The
immediate families had a chance to have a good cry and tears were everywhere.
Everyone had an opportunity to grieve and reflect on their own mortality. Even
Jerry Brown was there. Although he didn't give a speech, I understand that he
spent quite a bit of time behind the scenes comforting the families, so that was
good. Even while some obvious changes in the service were taking place, the
Honor Guard(s) performed flawlessly.
I just wanted to report that the service itself went well; they were dignified,
sympathetic and with an abundance of support.
Thanks to the San Jose PD and the California Highway Patrol for their much need
assistance throughout. And thanks to all who attended.
As noted above, don't
miss the first item in today's Lighter Side and Other Odds and Ends column below
as it provides a ride-along on one of the CHP motors as it escorted the
motorcade from Santa Cruz to the HP Pavilion.
Here's a very clearly stated video from an ex-Secret Service Agent on the topic
of gun control.
This week's blog entry by
Meyer Weed deals with the ramifications surrounding the deaths of Santa Cruz PD
Sergeant Loren "Butch" Baker and Detective Elizabeth Butler. To read it, click
on the link below...
THE HISTORY OF THE
SJPD SHALL NOT BE FORGOTTEN
In the late 1940s and early '50s an annual event in San
Jose was the Policeman's Ball. It was a grand event calling for a full-dress,
Class A uniform with "all hands on deck" (everyone was expected to attend).
Departmental relief was provided by the Police Auxiliary, later to be called the
SJPD Reserve. The Police Auxiliary, which was then comprised of about 350
officers, was formed during the early stages of World War II as many regular
officers marched off to war.
The Policeman's Ball was to benefit the widows and orphans of slain police
officers. In 1956, the event was marred by a "riot" at the Palomar Ballroom,
located behind the DeAnza Hotel, across the street from where the Mercury News
was then located. It became known as the "Fats Domino Riot" as he was the star
attraction for the evening. With the Policeman's Ball being held at the Civic
Auditorium on W. San Carlos at the same time, regular officers were called away
to the riot and responded in several patrol units equipped with running boards
that officers could stand on. These responding regular officers were all decked
out in their Ike jackets, white shirts, black ties and 8-point hats, but without
their typical crime-fighting tools of the day; no service revolver, nightstick,
sap or slapper. Most, however, did have their handcuff case and cuffs, which
could be used as "brass knuckles" should the need arise to subdue a "hostile."
Returning to the theme of this blurb, tickets for the Policeman's Ball were $10
each. At that price it was necessary to "rally the citizenry" for the noble
cause of benefiting the widows and orphans. Two stalwart officers Officer "Porkchop"
and Officer "Coach" were detailed to that endeavor because their sphere of
influence was considered nearly unlimited. This explained their ability to sell
500 tickets to a specific individual at South Lake Tahoe. His name was Harvey
Gross, then owner of Harvey's Wagon Wheel. When you next visit South Lake Tahoe,
be mindful that the original owner of Harvey's casino/hotel was a benefactor of
It's all part of the history of the SJPD.
information about Harvey's Wagon Wheel and the 1980 bombing that nearly
destroyed it, click on this link:
URBAN LEGEND UPDATE AS OF MARCH 10, 2013
The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox
Were five first-line U.S. aircraft carriers recently docked
together in one place for the first time since World War II?
Has the U.S. Army promoted accused Fort Hood shooter Nidal Hasan and
awarded him the Legion of Merit?
Article warns about the dangers of brominated vegetable oil in Mountain Dew
Will John Kerry be presenting an award to an Egyptian
woman who issued anti-Semitic and anti-U.S. statements via Twitter?
Is someone who has taken LSD more than seven times automatically deemed
Were five first line U.S. aircraft carriers recently
all docked together in one place for the first time since World War II?
A man is caught cheating on a drug test when urinalysis reveals that he's
Was the Bob Dylan song 'Blowin' in the Wind' actually written by a New
Jersey high school student?
Don't forget to visit our Daily Snopes page for a collection of odd news
stories from around the world!
Worth a Second Look
Did a customer close out his million-dollar account after his bank refused
to validate his parking ticket?
Still Haunting the Inbox
Check out our 25 Hottest Urban Legends list to keep abreast of what's
circulating in the on-line world.
Visit our Top Scams page for a list of schemes
commonly used by crooks to separate the unwary from their money.
THE LIGHTER SIDE &
OTHER ODDS AND ENDS
to adjust your YouTube settings to large or full screen.
Let's begin with this clip
we received from Larry Reuter which makes it possible for you to ride along with
one of the CHP motors who escorted last Thursday's Memorial Motorcade for Sgt.
Butch Baker and Ofcr. Elizabeth Butler from Santa Cruz to the H.P. Pavilion in
San Jose. The video covers the 33 miles in 7 minutes.
If that flying car in last
week's Farsider was a little over the top, perhaps this foot-powered sailplane
is more your style. (7 Mins.)
Have you WW II buffs ever
wondered how the Allies managed to deliver all of the fuel needed for the march
through mainland Europe following D-Day? The classic film footage in this United
News clip received from Larry Otter describes PLUTO, an acronym for Pipe-Lines
Under the Ocean. (4 Mins.)
Staying with WW II for a
moment, fans of the P-51 that helped win the air war over Europe should enjoy
this short video we received from Les Nunes. Just the sound of that Merlin
engine that powered the Mustang makes this clip worth watching. And the musical
soundtrack doesn't hurt, either. (4 Mins.)
We're not through with the
Second World War yet. As Army snipers go, the most prestigious award one can
receive is the "Black Hat." Watch as Ted Gundy, an 86-year-old sniper from WW
II, not only receives his, but he shows he still has what it takes to make the
so-called 1,000-yard "Impossible Shot." (8 Mins.)
If you are looking for a
cheap suppressor (silencer) for your firearm and don't mind flouting the law and
risking some time at a Federal country club, here's a tip from Bob Tenbrink.
He's not recommending this, mind you. Think of him (and us) solely as the
messenger. (6 Mins.)
Here's an interesting video
from Paul Salerno that shows how some people in the UK react to what they see as
a murder in progress. It begs the question, "What would you do?" (2 Mins.)
Speaking of the UK, this was received just prior
to press time...
Website tip: Click on the
link below, look at the hundreds of links displayed, and decide for yourself if
the website link is worth a bookmark or saving as a Favorite. The category index
is on the left side of the page...
It's one thing to have a
huge collection of classic Fords from the 1930s through the '50s, but when you
add neon signs from the same era you wind up with something truly magnificent.
Have a look at this clip. (5 Mins.)
Switching from Fords to G.M.
rides, you car buffs might enjoy this clip we received from Paul Salerno. And if
black Corvettes ring your bell, keep a towel handy because you are about to
salivate. (6 Mins.)
Speaking of Corvettes, Les
Nunes is a big fan and treats the one he owns as a hobby. A few weeks ago he
took his '69 street Vette powered by a big block 427 to Sacramento Raceway to
make a few passes and captured his second run with a Go-Pro video camera mounted
behind him. He had no idea he was about to set a personal best time. Given his
excitement when he received his time ticket at the end of the quarter mile, it's
easy to overlook the expletive he utters when he sees his time. His run was so
quick, in fact, that racetrack officials refused to allow him to race again
without a roll bar, flameproof driving suit and other safety equipment. No
matter. Les drove home with a big smile on his face.
Click on the link below if you want to ride along with Les on his
record-breaking run. There isn't much action at the beginning, so if you want to
use the scrubber bar at the bottom of the screen and jump ahead to the staging
area for his burnout moments before the Christmas Tree turns green, use your
mouse and move it to 1:05.
Speaking of racing, a
handful of readers sent us this prank by NASCAR's Jeff Gordon that is making the
rounds. If it's staged, it's funny. If it's real, it's hilarious. Have a look.
Still on the
subject of cars, here's a moving story from Dirk Parsons about a son who
surprised his parents for their 60th wedding anniversary with the same make and
model of the car the couple owned when they got married, a 1948 Plymouth
convertible. (7 Mins.)
Dirk also provided us with this short video of a new tire
deflation device designed to flatten the tires of the bad guy during police
chases without endangering the life of the officer responsible for standing on
the side of the road and flinging the spike strip across the roadway as the car
approaches. (1 Min.)
"How do you feel about
Obama pardoning the sequester and sending it to Portugal?" That was the question
posed to people on Hollywood Blvd. in Jimmy Kimmel's new feature he calls
"Confusing Question of the Day." For our depressing thought for the day, keep in
mind that most of the people you are about to see probably vote.
To Ron Mozley up in
Sandpoint, Idaho and our other SJPD brothers and sisters residing in the Gem
State (yes, we had to look it up), you folks can relax. While this Pelosi
quote may be true, we have it on good authority that the Republicans in the
House will prevent the bill from passing. At least until the 2014 mid-terms...
Speaking of guns, we were
not surprised to receive an e-mail earlier this week from Harry Mullins. He
wrote in to say this photo shows why high-capacity magazines should not be
From Bob Tenbrink comes the
story of the mother bobcat who took up residence with her two youngsters on the
roof of a house in Cave Creek, AZ. The house had a skylight, which enabled the
residents to keep an eye on the cats as they frolicked on the roof. When one of
the babies went missing one day, the owners assumed it had been carried away by
a hawk or an owl until the owner remembered there was an open column on the
roof. When he determined that the missing baby had fallen to the bottom of the
column, he used his drill to open a pathway for the little bobcat to go through
so it could join its mother and its sibling, but only after it had a refreshing
swim in the pool. The homemade video isn't of the greatest quality, but it still
tells the story. (2 Mins.)
Lumpy says this clip isn't
exactly reminiscent of the annual PBA Dinner Dance, but he says it's close.
Watch these senior hoofers strut their stuff on the dance floor.
Even though he has one of
his own, Tom Macris is the first to admit that cats can be jerks, and he
provided us with proof. (2 Mins.)
Say what you want about
edgy adult oriented American sitcoms, but when it comes to pushing the envelope
we have a long way to go before we catch up with the Brits and the Irish. Have a
look at this clip from the popular BBC TV show called "Mrs. Brown's Boys."
For details about the show, click on the link below...
To those readers who have commented that the
Farsider lacks class, we say bull...
I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the sweet earth's flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.
Joyce Kilmer, 1886 - 1918
The Aussies love their tree.
It's a shame that Bill
"Snake Man" Mitchell doesn't receive the Farsider. If he did, he would probably
love this clip about the Sweetwater (TX) Rattlesnake Roundup.
We tend to refer to how old
we are in terms of years, but this site converts your age to days, and I was
shocked to learn that I was well over 20,000 days old as of this week. Click on
this link we received from Doug Bergtholdt and you may be a little shocked as
For the record, John Henry
Kregel says he was not the inspiration for this video. Many of his
friends would disagree. (1 Min.)
Here's a pleasant memory
from the past, courtesy of Don Hale. It's a clip from the Carpenters' first TV
special in 1976 of Karen playing the drums. (6 Mins.)
Karen died in 1983 from Anorexia (eating disorder). She was 32
years of age.
In closing, this is for the
believers among you. It's a performance by Carrie Underwood and Vince Gill that
might bring a tear to your eye according to Bob Tenbrink, who suggests you might
want to keep a Kleenex handy. (5 Mins.)
Pic of the Week:
Go ahead and encourage your grandchild to be sociable
and join a
chat room. What could go wrong?